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Penn Law creates tailored program for First Generation students with aid of David Silk L’88

February 25, 2019

Sansom St. entrance to Golkin Hall.
Sansom St. entrance to Golkin Hall.
The program, a first for the Law School, will support six students over six years.

As seen in the Penn Law Journal

Starting next fall, the University of Pennsylvania Law School will welcome the first students accepted into the Penn Law First Generation Fellows program, which is open to those who are among the first in their families to attend graduate or professional school. The program, a first for the Law School, will support six students over six years. 

Under the guidance of a team of professional advisors, Fellows will receive personal attention in law school and beyond. The Fellows will have the opportunity to learn from prominent legal professionals and participate in an exclusive speaker series.

“Fellows will enjoy personally-tailored professional development supports that include executive communication coaching, professional technology training, interaction with a team of engaged mentors, and one year of post-graduation executive coaching to smooth the transition to practice,” said Jennifer Leonard L’04, director of Penn Law’s Center on Professionalism, which will administer the program. 

David Silk L’88, who established the program, said what sets it apart is its extension through the first year of practice. “For first generation professionals the transition is as important as the formal training that preceded it,” said Silk, partner at Wachtell Lipton Rosen & Katz and board member of Penn Law’s Institute for Law & Economics.

The expectation is that graduates of the program will mentor students who succeed them. 

Explaining his motivation for funding the program, Silk said: “I am very grateful for what Penn Law has done for me, and it is incumbent upon the University and the Law School to try to make this kind of education and opportunity available as broadly as they can to qualified students.”

This article was updated for the web.